In a recent development, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) Supremo Sharad Pawar hits out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his claims regarding the Women’s Reservation Bill. Pawar asserted that Maharashtra, under his leadership, was at the forefront of promoting women’s empowerment, making it the first state in India to initiate measures in this direction. He remarked that Prime Minister Modi had not been adequately informed on the matter.
NCP’s Sharad Pawar highlighted Maharashtra’s pioneering role, stating, “Maharashtra was the first state to enact policies benefiting women. During my tenure as Defence Minister, we introduced a groundbreaking 11 percent reservation for women in the armed forces. These decisions were made during the Congress government’s tenure.”
“Maharashtra had introduced reservations for women in municipal and district bodies as far back as 1994”, Pawar added.
He went on to clarify that on June 24, 1994, his Congress-led government in Maharashtra unveiled a comprehensive women’s policy, setting a precedent for the rest of the nation. Pawar lamented the lack of accurate briefings to the Prime Minister, leading to his statements against the Congress party.
In a historic move, the Indian Parliament recently passed legislation mandating 33 percent reservation for women in the Lok Sabha and state assemblies. The Lok Sabha approved the bill with an overwhelming majority, garnering 454 votes in favor and only two against, during a special session. Subsequently, the Rajya Sabha unanimously passed the Women’s Reservation Bill, with 214 members supporting it and none opposing it.
Regarding the ongoing tensions between India and Canada, Sharad Pawar expressed his solidarity with the Indian government. He stated, “As an Indian citizen and a Member of Parliament, I stand by the Indian government in the India-Canada dispute.” This statement came amid strained relations between the two countries, triggered by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s allegations on September 18 that the Indian government was involved in the fatal shooting of Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
Pawar also addressed the issue of a 40 percent export duty on onions imposed by the Indian government, emphasizing the adverse impact it could have on onion exports to Bangladesh and the livelihood of farmers. He mentioned being aware of a scheduled meeting with Piyush Goyal to discuss this matter further.
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